BP, Total, and Shell to suppliers: cut costs



BP, Total and Royal Dutch Shell are asking oilfield service companies to cut project costs by up to 40% in response to the current industry slowdown.  Executives at contractors including Technip, CGGVeritas and Saipem said they responded by reducing the number of drilling rigs in operation by more than 25% and will take oilfield vessels out of service.  The 64% plunge in oil from its July peak to close to $50 a barrel is deterring new investment and leaves the services industry, vulnerable as the order backlog shrinks.



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